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SOURCE: Bell's Weekly Messenger, No. 1795, Sunday, August 22, 1830


A case was brought before the Justice of Peace Court at Cromarty, on Monday last, of a singular description. The circumstances are as follow:—A small anchor having a short time ago been stolen from John Fraser, boatman, at Perrytown [sic], the parish of Resolis, he set out for Inverness with the view of consulting Miss Hay, who is reported to be skilled in the occult sciences. The usual fee having been demanded and readily paid, the spaewife, after having chalked out two letters (D. H.) directed Fraser to return home, assuring him that the first person that he should meet, the initials of whose name would answer to the above letters, was the thief. It happened that soon after his return, Fraser met David Holm, farmer at Ferrytown, whose initials corresponded with the letters, and he was accordingly denounced as the guilty person.—The man, however, convinced of his innocence, and seeing that his character was at stake, prosecuted Fraser for defamation, before the Justices, who, after having taken a proof, awarded the sum of two pounds' damages against Fraser, with expenses. The Justices strongly reprobated "consultations" of the description referred, which have become very prevalent in Resolis, and directed a copy of the judgement in this case to be posted on the church door of that parish on Sunday.—Edinburgh Courant.